23 COLWALL (E.c.)
(O.S. 6 in. (a)XXXVI, N.W., (b)XXXVI, S.W.)
Colwall is a parish on the E. border of the county
and on the W. side of the Malvern Hills, 3½ m. N.E.
of Ledbury. The church, Park Farm, Old Colwall, and
the camp on the Herefordshire Beacon are the principal
a(1). Parish Church of St. James (Plate 115)
stands in the W. half of the parish. The walls are of
local sandstone and shale, with sandstone dressings;
the roofs are covered with tiles. The S. doorway and
a few re-used stones indicate the existence of a 12th-century church, but its precise form and size are
uncertain. The S. arcade of the Nave is of mid to
late 13th-century date, the three eastern bays being
slightly earlier than the rest; the South Aisle was added
at the same time. The South Tower was added about
the middle of the 14th century, the bell-chamber being
built late in the same century. The South Porch was
added probably in the 16th century. The church was
restored in 1865–6 when the Chancel was re-built, and
again in 1880 when the N. arcade was built and the
North Aisle added.
The detail of the S. arcade is of interest.
Architectural Description—The Nave (57½ ft. by
19½ ft.) has a modern N. arcade. The mid to late 13th-century S. arcade is of five bays with two-centred arches
of two chamfered orders, struck from below the springing-line; the columns are cylindrical with moulded
bases and capitals and half-columns as responds; the
capital (Plate 17) of the third column is carved with
the heads of two men and two women with foliage
between; the fourth capital has 'stiff-leaf' foliage; the
capital of the W. respond (Plate 17) is carved with
a woman's bust and two pairs of heads. In the W.
wall is a doorway, probably of 14th-century date and
with chamfered jambs and modern head; above it is
a late 14th or early 15th-century window of three
trefoiled lights with tracery in a two-centred head.
There is a length of straight joint between the nave
and the S. aisle.
The North Aisle is modern but incorporates two mid
14th-century windows, re-set, and each of two trefoiled
ogee lights with a quatrefoil in a two-centred head.
The South Aisle (11½ ft. wide) has, in the E. wall, a
13th-century lancet-window. In the S. wall are two
windows, the eastern of c. 1300 and of two cinque-foiled
lights in a two-centred head, and the western of two
pointed lights in a square head, probably of the same
date but with a later head of a pointed window cut
down and re-set; the re-set late 12th-century S. doorway
(Plate 114) has a round arch of two orders, the outer
chamfered and the inner moulded; the jambs have a
rounded inner order and a detached shaft with moulded
base, scalloped capital and moulded abacus continued
round the inner order; farther W. is a modern doorway. In the W. wall is a 13th-century lancet-window.
The South Tower (14 ft. square) is of three stages with
an embattled parapet. The two lower stages are of mid
14th-century date, and the bell-chamber was added late
in the same century. In the E. wall of the ground-stage
is a large doorway, with jambs and two-centred arch
of two chamfered orders; it is now fitted as a window;
in the S. wall is a modern loop. The second stage has
a loop in the E., S. and W. walls. The bell-chamber
has, in each wall, a window of two trefoiled lights with
a quatrefoil in a two-centred head.
The South Porch is probably of the 16th century and is
timber-framed on dwarf walls. The outer entrance has
side posts and an ogee arched head under the tie-beam
of the gable; flanking the entrance are openings, each
with a diamond-shaped mullion. The E. side has
nine similar mullions. The roof is plastered.
The Roof of the nave (Plate 19) is of the 14th
century and of five bays with curved braces below
the collar-beams; there are two ranges of wind-braces,
the upper forming pointed and the lower sex-foiled
arches; there is an added tie-beam with the initials
and date R.M., R.C., 1675. The W. part of the roof
of the S. aisle is also of the 14th century and has two
braced collar-beam trusses; the E. part of the roof is
Fittings—Brass: In S. aisle—on S. wall, to Elisabeth, wife of Anthony Harford, 1590, rectangular plate
with figure of man in armour and six sons, and wife with
four daughters, achievement and two shields-of-arms.
Chest: In S. aisle—panelled front with enriched styles,
early 17th-century. Churchyard Cross: stump of
octagonal shaft in square base; niche in W. face, with
remains of pinnacles and finial, three square steps,
15th-century. Font: plain hemispherical bowl,
cylindrical stem and chamfered base, perhaps 13th
century, entirely re-cut. Glass: In N. aisle—in N.E.
window, foliated roundel, 14th or 15th-century; in
third window, similar roundel and fragments, 14th-century. In S. aisle—in E. window, various fragments; in second window in S. wall, roundel and fragments, 14th or 15th-century. Monuments and Floor-slabs. Monuments: In S. aisle—on E. wail, (1) to
[John] Walweyn, 1587, stone tablet with border, cornice
achievement-of-arms and the initials and names I.W.,
Walweyn and Rudhale. In churchyard—E. of chancel,
(2) to John Hartland, 1681, enriched table-tomb; S.E.
of S. aisle, (3) to Jone Gilding, 1713, head-stone; (4) to
Elizabeth James, 1706, head-stone; S.E. of chancel,
(5) to Elizabeth Goodman, 1711–12, head-stone.
Floor-slabs: In N. aisle—(1) slab with remains of
foliated cross, 14th-century. In S. aisle—(2) to [John]
Walwyn, 1587. (See Monument (1)); (3) to William
Hall, Jun., 1676; (4) to William Hall, 167– and Joane
his widow, 167–. Niche: On E. wall of tower—
rough recesses in the form of a triple niche with round
heads, date uncertain. Pavement: In N. aisle—in N.
wall, round slip-tile with labourers digging, 14th-century; on sill of second N. window, fragments of
slip-tiles including arms (a cross paty between four martlets),
14th-century. Pulpit (Plate 134): hexagonal, panelled
in two heights with enriched rails and posts with
baluster-ornament, frieze with marquetry work, lower
panels with lozenges and rosettes and upper panels with
enriched arch in each panel; similar panel on standard
of sounding-board; sounding-board with turned
pendants at angles, enriched fascias, cornice and cresting, late 16th or early 17th-century. Miscellanea:
Incorporated in N. wall of N. aisle, stone fragment
with 12th-century diapered ornament.
b(2). Homestead Moat, at Cummins Farm, ¾ m. S. of
the church, formed a four-sided enclosure and is much
obliterated on the S.
a(3). Brockbury, house, outbuilding, and moat,
850 yards S.E. of the church. The House is of
two storeys with attics. The walls are of brick and
the roofs are tiled. It was built in 1698 over the
cellars of an older house, and was originally timber-framed; the front was refaced in brick in or about
1738, retaining the old framing and windows; the
back has been cased in modern times. The front and
sides have original windows with solid frame, mullion
and transom; the roof is hipped. Inside the building
there are a number of early 18th-century panelled doors
and one of early 17th-century panelling. In the S.E.
room is an alcove with a shell-head, cherub-head and
key-block. The original staircase has turned balusters
and square newels with moulded cappings.
The Outbuilding, N.W. of the house, has been partly
re-faced in brick.
The Moat or enclosure lies 115 yards N.N.E. of the
house, and is of roughly triangular form. There is a
system of ditches, etc. extending to the E. and W.
Condition—Of house, good.
b(4). Oldcastle Farm, house and pond, nearly
1½ m. S.E. of the church. The House is of two storeys
with attics; the walls are of timber-framing, brick and
stone, and the roofs are tiled. It was built early in the
17th century and remodelled early in the 18th century.
Some of the timber-framing is exposed. The entrance
doorway has a late 17th or early 18th-century hood with
pediment resting on carved consoles. Inside the building are some exposed ceiling-beams and some early
18th-century panelled doors. The late 17th-century
staircase has moulded strings, turned balusters and
The Pond, N. of the house, was originally a moat,
the island having been removed in recent years.
Condition—Of house, good.
a(5). Park Farm (Plate 23), house, 80 yards N.W.
of the church, is of two storeys, timber-framed and
with tiled roofs. It is of rectangular plan with three
parallel roofs, running E. and W. The N. block is
earlier than the rest and dates probably from the
beginning of the 16th century; the rest is an addition
of late in the same century. The S. front has been
re-faced in brick.
The house is a good example of timber-framing.
The W. front has exposed timber-framing and is of
three gabled bays. The framing of the N. bay is closer
set than the rest, except in the gable, which has probably
been reconstructed. The gables have moulded bargeboards and moulded pendants. The ground floor has
a shallow bay-window of four lights with moulded
frame, mullions, transom and cornice; the first floor
has two similar bay-windows. The W. front has
similar gables and framing except that the earlier N.
gable retains its original herring-bone framing. The N.
front retains its original close-set framing, and has a
bay-window similar to those on the W. front. Inside
the building, the original part has heavy chamfered
beams. In the later part are moulded ceiling-beams
and some 17th-century panelling.
Condition—Fairly good, except N. range.
a(6). Old Colwall, house, 1,030 yards W.S.W. of
the church, is of three storeys; the walls are of brick
and the roofs are tiled. It was built probably early in
the 18th century and has a symmetrically designed front
with three ranges of sash-windows. Inside the
building, the fittings are mainly of later 18th-century
date, but the staircase (Plate 75) is original and has
moulded strings, twisted balusters and square newels.
The S.W. room has exposed ceiling-beams. The
garden, N. of the house, has old brick enclosing walls.
On the W. side are brick piers with ball-terminals.
a(7). Joyces, house, nearly ¾ m. E.S.E. of the church,
is of two storeys; the walls are of timber-framing and
brick, and the roofs are tiled. It was built in the 17th
century and extended to the S. in the 18th century,
and an E. wing added Some of the timber-framing is
exposed. Inside the building, some ceiling-beams are
exposed and there is a little original panelling. Two
panelled doors date from early in the 18th century.
a(8). Brook House, about ¾ m. E. of the church,
is of two storeys with attics; the walls are timber-framed and the roofs are tiled. It was built early in
the 17th century on an irregular plan, and has been
extended on the N.E., S.E. and S.W. in modern times.
The timber-framing is mostly exposed. Inside the
building are some exposed ceiling-beams. The late
17th-century staircase has moulded strings, wavy slatbalusters and square newels.
b(9). Brand Lodge, 1¾ m. E.S.E. of the church, is
modern, but built into the terrace-walls of the garden
are two late 16th-century carved stone panels and a
figure of the same date. The panels have scrolled
ornament and figures of Justice and (possibly) Plenty;
the single figure represents Ceres.
b(10). Dovehouse and barn at Barton Court, nearly
1 m. S. of the church. The Dovehouse (Plate 36) is a
round stone building with a pyramidal tiled roof capped
by a wooden cote. The building is perhaps of mediæval
date, but the roof is of the 17th or 18th century. Inside
the building are 16 tiers of nests. The Barn is weather-boarded. The five S.W. bays are probably of early
The following monuments, unless otherwise described, are of the 17th century and of two storeys;
the walls are timber-framed and the roofs are tile or
slate-covered. Most of the buildings have exposed
external timber-framing and ceiling-beams, and some
have original chimney-stacks.
Condition—Good or fairly good.
a(11). Barn, on the W. side of the road, 600 yards
N.N.W. of (10), is of one storey and probably of early
a(12). Moorcroft Farm, house, 720 yards W. of the
church, has been much altered.
a(13). Cottage (Plate 33), on the E. side of the
churchyard, has a thatched roof.
a(14). Lugg's Mill Farm, house, 530 yards E.N.E. of
the church, has an early 18th-century addition on the N.
The roof of the older part is thatched.
a(15). Mapleton (formerly the Sly House), house, ½ m.
E.N.E. of the church, was built probably early in the
18th century. The cross-wing at the E. end is a later
a(16). Cottage, 25 yards S. of (15), was built probably
early in the 18th century.
a(17). Upper Grovesend (formerly Grubend), house,
on the N. side of the road, nearly 1 m. E.N.E. of the
church. Some of the windows are of early 18th-century
a(18). Stamp Cottages, 150 yards W.N.W. of (17),
have a thatched roof.
a(19). Grovesend Farm, house, 80 yards S.W. of (17),
has been almost completely altered or re-built.
a(20). Pink's Cottages, three tenements, on the S.
side of the road, nearly 1¼ m. E.N.E. of the church, were
built early in the 18th century and have a thatched roof.
a(21). Cowlbarn Farm, house, nearly 1¼ m. E.N.E. of
the church, has modern additions at both ends.
a(22). Brockhill Farm, house, over 1¼ m. N.E. of the
church, was built late in the 17th or early in the 18th
century and has later additions on the S. side.
a(23). Cottage, 100 yards N.W. of the Railway Station,
has a cross-wing at the N.E. end. It has been considerably altered and modernized.
a(24). Cottage, on the N.W. side of the road, 350 yards
W. of the Railway Station, was built early in the 18th
century and has a thatched roof.
a(25). Highgate, cottage on the S.E. side of the road,
150 yards S.S.E. of (24).
a(26). Cottage, on the S.E. side of the railway-line,
¾ m. E.S.E. of the church, was built probably early in
the 18th century.
b(27). Cottage, S.W. of Colwall Green and 1,550
yards S.E. of the church, was built probably early in
the 18th century and has a later extension on the S.E.
b(28). Barton Cottages, two cottages, 50 yards S. of
(27), have thatched roofs.
b(29). Cottage, on the N. side of the road at Evendine,
1¼ m. E.S.E. of the church, has a thatched roof.
b(30). Hartland's Cottages, 30 yards E. of (29), were
built late in the 17th or early in the 18th century.
Part of the roof is thatched.
b(31). Cottage, N. of the road and 180 yards N.E. of
(30), has a thatched roof.
b(32). Malthouse Farm, house on the S. side of the
road, 120 yards E.S.E. of (31), has an added S. wing
and extensions to the E. and W., all of 18th-century or
b(33). House, 40 yards E. of (32), was originally of
L-shaped plan with the wings extending towards the
N. and W. An E. wing was added in the 18th century,
making the plan Z-shaped. The S.W. room has 18th-century plaster panelling and ceiling. In the middle
block are two original shaped brackets.
b(34). Herefordshire Beacon Camp (1,114 ft.)
(Plates 116–118) occupies the summit of that portion
of the Malvern Hills immediately S. of the Pass
through the hills at Wynds Point, and is 2 m. S.E.
of Colwall church. It covers an area of about 32
acres and is of irregular form, generally following
the contours. It is entirely surrounded by a ditch
with outer rampart, formed by the throwing outwards
of the spoil down the hillside, and an inner scarp
of great height which, in some places, is further
strengthened by a slight inner rampart. Above the
inner scarp the natural hillside has been cut, where
necessary, to form a berm or walk. There are four
entrances. The one to the W. side of the southern
part of the camp is approached by a curving trackway
with outer rampart while the inner rampart is turned
slightly inwards on either side of the entrance. The
second entrance is at the re-entrant of the angle formed
by the enclosure on the E. side, where there are traces
of an inner rampart, immediately S. of the causeway over
the ditch. The third is at the most southerly point of
the camp, where there is a causeway and inner rampart,
while the fourth is some 70 yards S.S.E. of the most
northerly point, and, though this has been much
destroyed, there are traces of a slight inner ditch
immediately N. of this entrance along which the
approach probably led, and not, as now, directly into
Within the enclosure—which consists of a roughly
circular hilltop with two lower projecting spurs running
respectively N.N.E. and S.—an inner stronghold has
been formed which is defended in part by the outer
camp defences, from the more northerly spur by a
ditch with outer rampart, and from the southern by a
series of terraces.
Herefordshire Beacon, in the parishes of Ledbury and Colwall.
The summit of this enclosure has been scarped to
form an oval mound with inner rampart, surrounding
ditch and terrace beyond. There are two ways of
access to this inner enclosure: one from the northern
spur, the ditch at this point having an inner rampart
which turns slightly outwards on each side of the
entrance; opposite to this, the top of the mound itself
is reached by way of a causeway over its encircling
ditch, the terrace at this point having its outer scarp
turned inwards, the S. side being ramparted in addition;
the second approach is by way of a partly artificial
causeway rising from a point in the camp opposite the
W. entrance and continuing up to the terrace, from
whence again the mound is reached by a causeway
over the ditch. Half-way along the lower causeway
are two flanking mounds showing the probable position
of a gate or some defensive structure at that point.
This inner mound—called the "Citadel" in many
accounts—is stated by Mr. Hadrian Allcroft to have
been probably a Norman construction, but there seems
to be no definite evidence of this.
Within the camp there are a certain number of
sinkings. There is one immediately N.E. of the W.
entrance, two S. W. of the N. entrance, and a small one
some 50 yards N.W. of the S. entrance. These, from
their position, may possibly be the sites of guard-huts.
There is also a group of small roughly circular sinkings
around the hill-top in the southern portion of the camp,
and a single sinking just within the N.E. entrance to the
The steepness of the scarping and a general similarity
in the construction of this camp to that of Midsummer
Hill Camp (late La Tène I—La Tène III) would
suggest that this work belongs to the same period
(see p. 73).
In the neighbourhood of the camp are the following
additional features:—Clutter's Cave (Plate 119), 200 yards
S.S.E. of the camp in an outcrop of rock, is a small cave
with the entrance on the W. side. It seems probable
that it is of artificial construction. On the inner wall
and facing the entrance is a roughly triangular shaped flat
face or panel. The 'Sacrificial Stone,' approximately 90
yards W. of Clutter's Cave, is a boulder of similar stone
to that of the cave. About 90 yards S.S.E. of the S. end
of the camp on the hillside, running parallel with the
contour, is a Pillow Mound, approximately 28 yards by
8 yards, with traces of a ditch at the ends and on the
lower side. It has an average height of 3½ ft. above the
soil on the lower side.
For the Shire Ditch, see under Eastnor Parish.
Condition—Of camp, fairly good.
a(35). Mounds, on the W. side of Shire Ditch, about
1¾ m. E. of the church, are two in number. They are
both about 34 ft. in diameter, the northern 3½ ft. and
the southern 2½ ft. high. They are about 5 yards apart
and have sunk tops.